Gloucestershire Northern Senior League Division Two
Wotton 2 Longford 1
WOTTON took victory in their first game of the year after some busy work in the transfer window.
New signings Robbie Richards and Chris Field were welcomed into the squad and Tom Frith was recalled from a loan spell at Kingswood following the injuries to Beric Wetton and Simon Graham.
The game started fairly evenly with neither side creating any great chances.
Wotton's defensive wall of Gareth Pedley, Tom Hemmings, Korey Pring and Tom Etherington gave Chris Field little to bother him, however anything that did get through was quickly moved away from danger by Field.
The hosts were forced into an early change when Pring suffered a knee injury. Alex Lumsden came on and Etherington was moved to his more natural centre back position.
The first half finished as it started with neither team overly pleased with their efforts and Longford looking marginally better.
Wotton came out after a dressing down from the management team and started the second half brightly.
Numerous opportunities were created and were it not for the fine performance from the visiting keeper, Wotton could have scored numerous goals.
Wotton introduced Richards and the creative Connor Frost to add some pace.
This paid dividends for the home team as Richards' pace and Frost's trickery led to the ball finding Clint Hopkins, whose pinpoint cross was flicked on by Nick Bird and hammered into the roof of the net by Etherington to rapturous cheers by the 250 supporters.
Wotton's lead was doubled soon after when a corner won by Richards was floated into the box by Frost perfectly for Lumsden to power into the top corner. Rover Rovers continued to dominate. Richards' cross was thumped goalwards by Hopkins, only to see the ball come back off crossbar and the referee signalled that the ball had not crossed the line.
Longford were rewarded for their hard work when they scored a consolation in injury time.